As I've watched yellow buses fill our neighborhood again and seen back-to-school pics on Facebook, I started to reminisce about that time in my own life...my mother packing my lunch and sending me off to school in those early years. Those were the days. What I wouldn't give to sit and play with play dough or finger paint all day.
I always loved the first day of school. Every thing was new and fresh... including my purple trapper keeper. I loved sharpening all my new pencils the night before and the smell of new paper as I packed my back pack. There was always something new to wear, and, being the extrovert that I am, new people to meet and friends to make.
In the early years, I remember my mother preparing our milk and lunch cards every week. She would fill our lunch punch cards with money to give to the cafeteria lady and she would always put change in a white envelope for milk, label it, fold it, and put it in my nap sack (as she would call it). Mom put a little extra change in there each week so I could have chocolate milk. :)
Kindergarten was a big year for me. It was coincidentally the same year that I told all my teachers, classmates, the bus driver, and all the kids on the bus that my mom had a baby. The bus driver even congratulated my mother when she came to get me from the bus stop. My mom graciously thanked her and then scolded me when the bus rolled away. "Why did you tell them that?" she said. It wasn't a complete lie, mind you. Nope, my mom had a baby-my little brother. Only she had him about four years before that.
They say that the early years show signs of what your child might become. My future clearly rested in politics. Not only did I lie, I also ran recess. Yup, each recess all the kids came to me to get their assigned roles for house. I would assign pets, parents, children, postmen, etc. This happened every day at recess. Call me bossy, but I think I was more of a director.
First Grade was also a pivotal year. It was the year I began my lifelong stint as the tall girl in the middle of all the photos. You know, its not a bad place to be. That was also the year that I discovered that girls were mean after I got the ax from the girls lunch table because I got hot lunch instead of bringing a Wonder Bread turkey sandwich. It worked out OK. During recess I raced all the boys on the field. I won every time, but everyday they would challenge me over and over, volunteering their friends to go up against me until one of them won, which never happened. I found out later that this is a very bad way to try and get a first date. (They won't ask you out if they're all scared of you...just FYI.) However, I never wanted for friends even though the cold lunch girls gave me the cold shoulder.
Ah, such sweet memories of simpler times. School was such huge influence for me as it is for many children and I loved it.
So here's to all the parents out there who faithfully get their kids off to school each day fed and ready to learn, and to all the bus drivers, teachers, aids, and principals that make molding these little minds possible.
Happy School Year Kids!!!!